Until recently, console rival Microsoft had enjoyed a favourable response to its frequent and transparent Series X reveals. The platform holder announced the console’s name in December when, unusually for a platform reveal, it opted to show the system’s design and controller in its very first marketing beat.
Later it put Xbox Series X in the hands of expert content creators, and this month it hosted an Xbox Series X gameplay reveal event, although it subsequently acknowledged criticism of the showcase.
In comparison, Sony has yet to show PS5’s form factor (although it has revealed the new DualSense controller) and relatively few PS5 games have been announced, while a recent PS5 reveal event was criticised for its highly technical nature.
Following the publication of its full-year financial results on May 13, during which it revealed PS4 has shipped over 110 million units and PS5 is still on track to launch during the 2020 holiday season, Sony was asked to rate its next-gen marketing campaign to date.
During an investor Q&A session, a Merrill Lynch analyst said: “Sony’s next generation game console marketing compared to Microsoft’s software line-up introduction is a bit inferior—some people say it’s lagging—so towards the launch of PS5, do you think that you have a passing grade and if it is a passing grade, what is going well?”
“Is it a passing grade or not?” Sony’s chief financial officer Hiroki Totoki responded. “Well, on that point, I think results will be everything, so after the launch it will become clear, and so we are going to make our upmost effort.”
The investor also asked Sony to identify the theme of its PS5 advertising activity going forward.
“So PS5, we have to think strategically right now, therefore unfortunately I cannot really make a comment,” Totoki replied.